He’s funny – like, actually funny

Ridgeway comedian Kenny Robertson

RIDGEWAY – For Kennedy Alexander Robertson, figuring out that he’s funny – like, actually funny for real – was kind of a process.

But ever since he got on stage for the first time at The Comedy House in 2013, his jokes have been taking him places – Columbia, Greenville, Charleston, Asheville, Atlanta, Tampa, Washington DC and Scottsdale AZ.

“It’s definitely heading in a more professional direction,” said Robertson, 34, a Ridgeway native who’s also got a long history of helping others in the Fairfield County community. “Comedy – especially my brand of comedy – it kind of opens a lot of doors for me.”

Robertson grew up in Ridgeway. He played basketball for Fairfield Central High School and then Shenandoah University, where he earned a business-related degree.


In his years after college, he traveled to Europe coaching and playing basketball for a nonprofit organization and subsequently took a coaching job at Fairfield Middle School in 2012, then Fairfield Central High School in 2014. Since 2017 he’s been teaching physical education at Geiger Elementary School in Ridgeway.

“Growing up in Ridgeway and then coming back home and being able to teach at a school that I went to,” he said, “to be able to see my friends and classmates and be able to teach all their kids, that’s so cool.”

When his students would find out he’s a comedian, he said, they’d always ask him to tell a joke. His response?

“Why is six afraid of seven?

Because seven eight nine.”

He said his journey toward comedy began when he was in college, and a group he was involved with a visit to campus by a well-known actress.

“We were just laughing, having a great time, and she said, ‘Oh my goodness, Kenny, you’re so funny! Have you ever thought about doing standup comedy?’” he recalled. “And I thought, ‘Heck no, because I’m not that type of funny. I’m funny when we’re all at home kind of funny…. I’m not a comedian.’”

Thinking about famous comedians he admires – like Eddie Murphy, Dave Chapelle, and Jerry Seinfeld – he didn’t feel like he measured up, he said. But he took her advice to go home and write three minutes of material.

“I didn’t write three minutes; I wrote like three hours of material. Because every time something would come to my mind, I just wrote and wrote,” he said.

“I just wrote jokes, and I wasn’t sure if they were funny or not, but they were funny to me, so I kept writing and writing, and I started watching other comedians – not to laugh, but to see how they told a joke: how do you make it funny for the other people,” he said.

It wasn’t until he met local comedian Mike Goodwin that he felt encouraged enough to take his jokes to the stage – and begin referring to himself as a comedian. That was when he signed up to participate in his first show at The Comedy House in Columbia.

“I didn’t tell my family, I didn’t tell my friends, I didn’t tell anybody that I was going to The Comedy House,” he said. “I only had five minutes, and the people laughed the entire five minutes, so I said, ‘Oh, man, these strangers are laughing,’ and I said, ‘Oh, man, maybe I’m funny for real.’”

A few months later he performed in a show at Columbia College that was headlined by Goodwin. And the rest is history.

“I was telling my jokes, and Mike [Goodwin] was in the back laughing, and I said, ‘Man, I guess I might be funny,’” he said. “So, he took me to a church with him to perform, and I’ve been performing ever since. That was 2013.”

Since then, his comedy has taken him all over. And because his comedy is “clean” – meaning it doesn’t use foul language or crude material – he’s been able to perform at churches, colleges and other venues outside of comedy clubs.

He says performing clean comedy means he has to choose his words well and paint a clear picture with his storytelling, more so than “dirty” comedians do – but he likes the imagination that requires.

“I kind of talk about everything,” he said. “Naturally I talk about my students because you can’t hang around kids too long and not have material about kids because kids are funny. They’re hilarious. But I talk about relationships, I talk about money… and I just talk about everyday life things.”

He said his comedy has opened doors, from serving as master of ceremonies at weddings to building a podcast.

After last school year, he said, he decided to step away from teaching to focus on his comedy and another passion: his desire to grow a financial services business that may help him form the foundation of his next career.

Robertson said he’s always been involved in mentoring children and youth, and that won’t stop now – especially in his native Fairfield County. But from a career standpoint he’s focused on developing his voice as a comedian as well as his skills in finance.

“My next ambition is to get the financial services business up and running. Ultimately my goal is to have a large investment firm, so that’s what I really want to do – as well as my comedy” he says. “I want to find a way to blend the two. I want to blend finance and entertainment.”

How will he do that? He says he’s not exactly sure yet. But he’ll find the answer just like he found the path to becoming a comedian: by being himself.

For more information or to  book Robertson for a meeting or event, call 803-420-1343.

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